February was intense- if I were to reflect at the end of every week I would have had a different response. I'm glad it's all over, but only because I'm eager to take what I've learned and apply it to the rest of the year. It seems as though the central theme of the my month was "relationships." I guess the older you get the more of those you have, or something. I thought the opposite was true. Whatever.
1. Be a student before a teacher. Perhaps the best thing to happen to me are the people who are close to me in my life. Just about every invaluable lesson I've learned about myself, I've learned from others. Whether it's been conversing over a cup of Mate, listening while baking pancakes, observing in the coffee shop over a textbook, or crying to my best friend. There's nothing more gratifying than hearing my best friend say, "I love talking to you." Practicing effective listening- check.
2. Don't panic. Nothing is worth diminishing your health (and subsequently, happiness) over. The bottom of an Honest Tea bottle cap reads: "If you don't like your current situation, change it. If you can't change your current situation, then change your attitude" (thank you, Whole Foods Market.) This past month I was real close to giving up. I truly felt like my motivation was slipping, and I reached a point where I didn't care anymore. After a few days of pitying myself I realized what am I doing?? It takes way too much effort to think negatively about a situation. I've never understood that like I do now. In Physics I learned that reducing the force of impact happens when you extend the time of impact. In my silly little mind I can apply this to read: when something hits you, instead of panicking right away and letting your mind wander down a slippery slope of ideas, you can stop and think rationally at what lies before you. Rolling with the punches- check.
3. Perseverance goes a long way. I didn't know how to tell Jace this, but the first time we hiked up the Phoenix Mountain Preserve, I thought I was going to die. My body had reached its physical capacity, my asthma was acting up, and quite frankly, I thought hiking was the worst thing ever. He kept encouraging me that once I reached the top of the mountain the view of the Valley would be well worth the trek upward. So I told myself, "Perseverance." And I repeated this over, and over, and over. About 15 feet from the top where the incline was steep, I started to run. And I ran all the way to the top only to reveal one of the most beautiful views I've ever seen. (And over a year later, I can still close my eyes and see it.) With a little hard work and determination, anything in life is possible. Setting and achieving goals- check.
4. "Do you." Truly living life with a light heart- check.
5. And finally, reciprocity is a beautiful thing. In some ways, you can measure your worth to someone by measuring their worth to you. Progressing- check.
February was beautiful in a sense that I learned lessons I never want to forget. Even though nothing went my way, they say experience is what you get when you don't get what you want. And really, this couldn't have happened at a more perfect time in my life. And it couldn't have happened unless I was ready for it to happen.
Thanks for the experience, February.